Da Gama - 'There's definitely something wrong with Mayambela'
Highlands Park coach Owen da Gama says Mark Mayambela needs urgent intervention if the talented winger is to get his career back on track.
Mayambela's contract with Chippa United expired at the end of last season, with the club opting not to renew. The 31-year-old has been training with Highlands and Da Gama seemed to suggest that Mayambela is battling plenty of demons in his life.
“There’s definitely something wrong with Mark,” Da Gama said.
“Something in his life is not right. I mean he is such a quality player to go from one team to the other.”
Da Gama has worked with Mayambela before when the pair were together at Bloemfontein Celtic between 2008 and 2010.
“He needs to get it right with the family as to what he can do and what he wants to do to fix up his life because he just needs a little bit of luck,” Da Gama said.
Asked what he meant by “luck”, Da Gama said: “Luck in terms of fixing up whatever is wrong in his life – you know what I mean. I’m talking about [fixing his life] in our African perspective.
“Maybe somebody is not happy at home or, you know, the family is not happy with certain things. That’s why I said he has to go back home and sit with his father and his uncles and his mother and the family and try and see what it is that can be done.”
Da Gama said Mayambela still has the ability to play at the highest level and the potential to be a valuable asset for any top-flight club.
“He is really a quality player and I advised him to go back home, which he did over the weekend, to go and sit with the family and just have a prayer," said the Lions of the North mentor.
“He is back already. He went home on Friday and came back on Monday.
“As a father I advised him that he needs to go back home to sit with the family and pray.
“I am working on him mentally as a human being and as a child, you know, and hopefully Mayambela can get his act together and start producing the football that we know he can produce.
“He is definitely a player with quality and I know what he is capable of.
“Remember he played for me at Bloemfontein Celtic and he had a brilliant season that year and Pirates bought him.
“I coached Mark at Celtic and when I got there he was not playing and I worked on him and worked with him and he had his best season and Pirates bought him."